The first day of school. Parents take pictures. Girls wake up extra early to make sure their hair and makeup are perfection. Guys actually put an effort into their appearance. It’s all the same, just like it will be Monday when McKinney schools begin another year. No matter what age you are or what grade you’re in, the anxious feeling always overwhelms you.
I have gone to MISD schools since kindergarten and I remember the elementary school days when my mom picked my outfit and made my lunch and dropped me off in the carpool line with all my friends. Then in middle school I thought I was too cool because I was going to school with the big kids and I had seven different classes, rather then one. And then there’s freshman year when I cried while my brother drove us to school because I was so nervous.
However, as a senior I have come to find out that after you have been through this 12 times, the excitement really dies down. All of a sudden you are just ready to get senior year under way, finish out high school and make it to college. When school shopping used to be a week-long activity with my mom and brother, it’s now a one-hour shopping spree online. When I used to buy every school supply the entire store had to offer, a pen and a spiral will do the trick. It all changes when you hear that word senior and realize just how close you are to being done with all of it.
Senior year brings on a whole new load of to-do’s and agendas. All of sudden we have to worry about college applications, scholarships, SAT scores, being on varsity in sports, senior portraits, AP classes, a mound of extracurricular activities, getting credits to graduate, and in my case, being co-editor of the top yearbook in the country at McKinney High School. The glitz and the glamour of the first day doesn’t seem to matter anymore because we all have so much more on our minds. To me, August 27 sounds more like just a day in the week and not the day you get a fresh start and a new year.
However, just because I have extra weight on my shoulders doesn’t mean that I’m not looking forward to the array of traditions senior year has to offer, like senior parking spaces, being at the top of the high school totem pole, senior release, prom, senior picnic and most of all graduation.
Everyone always stamps the term "it’s the beginning of the end" on senior year. And I hadn’t really thought about how relevant that was until now. Although June 7, 2013, seems a long ways out, with everything senior year has to offer I’m sure it will go by in the blink of an eye.
So parents, get the cameras out. Kids, spend two hours getting ready in the morning and enjoy your first day while you can. Because, before you know it, you’ll be nearing the end of the tunnel just like me.
Teen Talk columnist Catherine Festa is a senior at McKinney High School. Watch for her column and stories throughout the year.